Social Issues Lead Bowl Buzz

The pre-game buzz surrounding ads touching on contemporary social issues is outpacing the hype for traditional brands.

That’s according to data collected by Nielsen — and the research company reports that spots both airing in and rejected from Sunday’s game have folks on the Internet talking.

Focus on the Family, airing an anti-abortion-themed commercial with college football star Tim Tebow, has earned 33.4 percent of the total online Bowl buzz in the two months ending Jan. 31, per Nielsen.

Despite having its guy-smooch spot booted from contention, gay dating site ManCrunch tallied 6 percent of the buzz.

Pete Blackshaw, Nielsen evp of digital strategy, noted: “Both the anti-abortion ad and the gay-themed ad have triggered significant levels of conversation. Other advertisers looking to drive buzz on top of their ads may need to work a bit harder to navigate around the controversial content.”

Pepsi is the second most-discussed advertiser pegged to the game (almost 22 percent), though the Pepsi brand itself will not be represented. (Some PepsiCo products like Doritos will be featured in spots.)


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